Colgate-Palmolive India Limited and the Indian Dental Association (IDA) have successfully concluded the sixth edition of the oral health awareness programme.
Oral Health Month (OHM) was initiated in 2004 as a six-city programme, with an aim to establish and promote the importance of good oral care habits. This year, it went on to become the largest mass-contact oral health awareness programme in India, covering 1,000 towns for the first time, with the support of 17,500 dental professionals.
This year, the programme intensified its efforts to take the oral health message to underprivileged areas, through a mobile dental van initiative that reached 37 cities and provided over 1.2 lakh free dental check-ups. Over 4 lakh school children across India were given tips on oral care hygiene through the special School Oral Health Awareness programme. Free dental check-ups were also organised at dental colleges across India.
This year, OHM also extended its support to NGOs, including Pratham, Akshara Foundation, Save the Children and Salaam Balak Trust, by conducting free dental check-ups for NGO workers and children, along with distributing free samples. A first for OHM this year were the free dental check-ups conducted especially for the Indian Coast Guard in Chennai.
Roger D Calmeyer, managing director, Colgate-Palmolive (India) says, "When we began our plans for OHM 2009, we knew that if we were to make it a truly successful mass-contact programme, we needed to spread the message of good oral hygiene in as many cities as we could. When we set the target of 1,000 towns, we knew it would be a logistical challenge. We are proud that Oral Health Month now has the shape of a national movement."
For the record, Colgate has been ranked as India's No.1 Most Trusted Brand across all categories for four consecutive years, from 2003 to 2007, by Brand Equity's Most Trusted Brand Survey. Prior to this, Colgate was also rated as the No.1 brand by the A&M - MODE Annual Survey for India's Top Brands, for eight out of nine years during the period 1992-2001.